Smokey anjd Angie Parrish reign over festivities

Franklin County Commission Chair Smokey Parrish and his wife Angie looked regal Saturday evening as they led a line of dancers that weaved its way through the Armory to “When the Saints Go Marching In.”

And as King Rex and his queen, the couple had plenty of reason to be, since they were sovereigns of a great cause, Habitat for Habitat, which was marking its 15th annual Mardi Gras dinner and ball.

The event was expected to raise about $15,000 for the group as it pursues putting up its sixth house in the county.

But Max Brown, a longtime member of the Habitat board, said that money will only go about a quarter of the way towards the $60,000 needed to set sail on the next project. He said active fundraising is continuing, and that Habitat hopes to move on the project in a year or so.

The band The Recollections, playing a mixture of sultry jazz and smooth love songs, delighted the crowd all evening. The band featured Frank Miceli on keyboards, Kristi Partington on keyboard, vocals and percussion; Monte Akin on guitar, David Wentzell on drums and flute; and Tony Partington, on vocals and percussion.

The evening closed with a delightful performance by Apalachicola Bay Charter School eighth grader Jenessa Akin, accompanied by her dad on guitar. Jenessa, from Eastpoint, studies music at the Eastpoint library, where her dad teaches guitar.

She sang two songs by her idol, Amy Winehouse, “Valerie” and “Back to Black,” as well as the classics “Stand by Me” and “The Lion Sleeps Tonight.”

Earlier in the evening, Parrish partnered with Samantha Jones to sing some rhythm-and-blue favorites from the ‘60s, and ‘70s, while Tony Partington and the band offered vintage music from a wide range of eras.

The Armory was full of several tables purchased by sponsors, who included Allen Jones, Centennial Bank, Taylor’s Building Supply, Collins Vacation Rentals, PeoplesSouth Bank, Bobby James, Inc., Mason and Marilyn Bean, Ace Hardware of Apalachicola, Greater Cincinnati Foundation, Drexel Metals, 84 West and Max and Deborah Brown.

“We give our thanks to the community for supporting us,” said Brown.